Yellowstone National Park: Thermal Dangers

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Thermal Dangers

The turquoise pools and steaming rivers may seem inviting, but potential injury (and even death) should discourage the curious visitor.

Unique Land

With some 10,000 mudpots, fumaroles, and hot springs, and more than 200 active geysers, Yellowstone is home to more than 75% of the world's geysers. Millions of visitors from around the world travel to this unique land for pure inspiration and understanding of the geological forces that are revealed on the earth's crust in our world's first national park.

Park Regulations

There have been many injuries and deaths surrounding the thermal features in Yellowstone National Park. The park service has set regulations so that visitors remain awareness of their surroundings.

  1. Be extremely cautious in thermal areas due to thin and fragile crusts overlying boiling water.
  2. Be alert for bears in geyser basins in spring and early summer.
  3. Do not travel through thermal areas after dark.
  4. Stock are not permitted in thermal areas.
  5. Altering or putting objects in thermal features is prohibited.
  6. Swimming, soaking or bathing in water that are entirely of thermal origin is prohibited.
  7. Thermal Dangers

    In thermal areas, the ground may be only a thin crust above boiling hot springs, and there is no way to guess where a safe path is. New hazards can bubble up overnight, and pools are acidic enough to burn through boots, so you must stay in designated walking areas. The park service has established boardwalks for an easy and safe approach to thermal features. Every person needs to be cognitive of their surroundings and responsible for children that are touring the geyser basins. Pets are not allowed off leash in the park, and are not allowed on any boardwalk in the geyser basin. For everyone's enjoyment and safety, leave your leashed pets in the parking lot with supervision or in the safe comfort of your vehicle.

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